Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Processing Options

For our anniversary, I captured an image of my wife's favorite yard chairs and made her a print. BraketMode, ProHDR and DynamicLight apps used for starters.

I thought the close proximity of the chairs expressed togetherness. Maybe I've seen too many of those Cialis bathtub comercials?! The fun with digital is in the interpretation and processing (use of apps in this case). I could have created the same effect from my "big camera" and image editing software had I chose to. I have to admit that there is something addictive to creating with a cell phone. The next is the one I chose to give my wife. Despite having taken the picture as the snow ended, I tried to warm the scene with the processing choices.PhotoForge, Retouch, PicGrunger, Crop'n'Frame and Impression.

Following are the other treatments I considered. A light treatment with ArtistaOil yelded a water color look.

Lastly, the one with the frost overlay (PhotoStudio) is how the scene looked when it was snowing and while I like it, I felt it too cold feeling for an anniversary card. As the saying goes, Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Which version do you like?

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Happy Anniversary!, Donna

IMG_1272, originally uploaded by Donnie Fulks.
Happy Anniversary, Donna! I caught this one on the iPhone a couple of days ago at the end of the driveway after a late season fleeting snow. Looks like we will have to wait until next week for some warm spring days- just like we had on that special day 31 years ago. The weather outside never changes the warmth in my heart for you. Love Ya!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Pear Blossoms

IMG_1179, originally uploaded by Donnie Fulks.
Spring is in the air. Soon warm days will be here to stay. Created with ArtistaOil app.

White Sands, NM

_DSC7775_DxO nx topaz 72dpi, originally uploaded by Donnie Fulks.
Donna and I passed through White Sands National Monument last July. White Sands is located in southern New Mexico and is the largest natural deposit of gypsum sand in the world. We had a tough time getting light in the golden hours during our visit. When we arrived late afternoon, a thunderstorm blew in and quickly dashed hopes for the shadows I had envisioned. Not wishing to become a lightning rod on one of the dunes we were forced to leave just as the light was starting to get interesting.

Not knowing when, or if ever, I'd be able to return to this fascinating place again I got up early the next morning and was first in line at the gate waiting for the Park Ranger to let me in. Just as the sun started to crest the mountains to the east, a bank of clouds moved in and blocked the light. Skunked again!

I found it is better to try for late afternoon as the park is open to sundown, as I recall. The white dunes are quite flat looking once the sun is up off the horizon much at all. In the morning, the gate is opened not that early in relation to sunrise in the summer. From the front gate, one has to drive several miles to the dunes and then hike a ways to get into position. So allow about 45 minutes from passing the gate after purchasing your ticket to get back to the dunes. Best to have your ticket purchased in advance if you wish to try shooting in the morning.

It is a place I hope to return to some day. Certainly worth a visit if you are in the southwest region.

Oliver 1600 Tractor

_DSC9246_DxO_raw topaz 72dpi, originally uploaded by Donnie Fulks.
Just when I thought spring might truly have arrived, snow is back in the forecast for tonight.

From one of the snow storms from winter before last. This is one of our old tractors- a Oliver 1600 model, circa 1960. There is something fascinating about old equipment and the simple designs.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Winter Sunset

IMG_1077, originally uploaded by Donnie Fulks.
More iPhone. This one was captured and processed in the iPhone4. Captured a month ago on the commute home. Perhaps "commute" is a stretch. Belvedere covers just shy of a square mile, so my commute is about a mile from the office to the house (in the treeline). Seriously, I don't see how folks do the I-95 thing. I'd be certifiably crazy in a week.

I used this shot for the title page in my powerpoint presentation at a conference recently and it looked great on the big screen. I'm amazed at how good the iPhone stuff looks in prints too. It's a fascinating medium and I look forward to seeing how some of the creative learning translates to my "big camera" work.

Pro HDR, ArtistaOil, Crop'n'Frame

Smokies Sunrise

IMG_0942, originally uploaded by Donnie Fulks.
Here's a shot from my workshop with Tony Sweet two springs ago. I believe this was shot from one of Tony's secret spots off Sparks Lane where the sun rises through a notch in the mountains and lights the background in that brilliant golden blast. Captured with my Nikon D300- an OK shot, I've always thought. I brought it into the iPhone and used the Artista Oil app and ended up with a result I like far better. Perhaps it is the frustrated artist in me that finds the oil treatment so satisfying. I suppose I could get Alien Skin plugin (for many times the cost of iphone app) and arrive at the same result on the computer.

Old Planter in Blizzard

IMG_0884, originally uploaded by Donnie Fulks.
I've been bitten by the iPhoneography bug. This was taken with my Nikon DSLR and reworked in the iPhone. The biggest problem I have with the iPhone is there are some many apps I can hardly remember which ones I used! Thinking this one processed with VintageScene, Crop.n.Frame and Impression.

Super H Tractor

This HDR shot is of one our old tractors on the farm. I took it earlier this winter for the Fredericksburg photo club critique night, subject "Red". It was snowing when I took it, which was just what I needed to obscure the background. Ran it through Topaz Define- a filter I use often in my workflow.

Palouse Red Barn

A barn shot from my Palouse trip last summer. Single shot HDR w/ NIK's HDR EfexPro. I'm finding it a little easier to get a more natural HDR look with Efexpro than with Photomatix- at least with early attempts. It was starting to rain and didn't have time to tighten up the composition as much as I would have liked.

The Palouse region of eastern Washington state is a fabulous place to visit and photograph. Would love to go back again sometime.